Friday, June 28, 2013

An Interview with International Interior Designer Alex Papachristidis

Introducing Interior Designer Alex Papachristidis



I was very fortunate to have a long conversation recently with a the very talented Interior Designer Alex Papachristidis



Alex also sent me his book "The Age of Elegance" which I cannot recommend  highly enough.

It is filled with page after page of the most sumptuous rooms!

Please enjoy images below of some special projects including The Kips Bay Showhouse.


1)     Alex please tell us about your early years and your beginnings in good taste.
  I understand your childhood was not only quite interesting; it was an international adventure as well.

I had an amazing young life. My Mother believed in new style education, I was not left with nannies. I experienced seeing the world, foreign films, fine dining. One year we went to Greece for the summer and ended up staying for two years!
We went to Paris and Venice to visit museums and galleries.





2)    How did these experiences influence you and your career decisions?

I was influenced by style, sensibility, an understanding different cultures. I never thought of being a designer and so went into the family business; shipping. Then I understood how important is is to do something you are passionate about.


3)    Did you take classes early on in design or go to a school of interior design?

A friend told me that I always had great taste one day and I had an epiphany.  I immediately enrolled in the Parsons School of Design for classes. 

When I think back as a child I had collections of small scale houses which I styled. Friends and family gave me Steif Figures that I dressed for the homes; so I suppose there was a prediction to design.




4)  How would you describe your design style? A client has probably seen or heard of your work when you get a call to take on a project!

     Traditional with a fresh touch. I like to see a juxtaposition of the new and old! My friends and family have had me design their homes. Stay open and life has a way of bringing great experience and knowledge one's way!




5)    Whether you are working on a residential or commercial design; in what ways is the connection with your client important?

    We have a very special relationship and become close. I like to be very personal and am not technology oriented, though it is taking over. I stay in a good mood, respect my clients. There is a process of understanding each other and building a personal rapport.

     Have fun! I feel it is a privilege to have this experience and want it to be their home and to enjoy every room. I help them build collections and artwork. It is a balance.




6)    Who are some iconic interior designers that you admire and respect?

The great Renzo Mongiardino, see his work in "Roomscape" He was the Interior Designer for The Hotel Particular in Paris, Renzo was the designer in the 1960's for Stanislas and Lee Radziwill's home in Oxfordshire, England, and many more great projects as both Architect and Interior Designer.

     Georges Geoffrey, who designed for Gloria Guiness, the Rothchild's and more. The cultured Mona von Bismark, one of the best dressed and most influential woman of her time!



7)  Your new book is named “The Age of Elegance”, in which the Forward is written by the esteemed Mario Buatto. Alex how do you apply that description to your personal and design aesthetic?

    I am somewhat "old school", I am very aware of the architecture which sets the tone. I want to create a place of beauty, even in my own homes which I share with my partner Scott. 

    There has to be variety, every room a visual feast. I combine my love of 18th Century antiques with contemporary art. I am very detail oriented and stay open to new directions. All is luxurious (not necessarily expensive) and tasteful.




8)    Alex, you are also a designer who is featured in Ronda Rice Carmen’s “Designers At Home, Personal Reflections on Stylish Living” Your apartment on the Upper East Side, where you live with your partner Scott is luxurious, sumptuous and artful to the nth degree. I absolutely loved what I saw!  Comments?

     Ronda and I know each other through mutual friends. She has written about me on her site, so when she asked me to participate,I did not hesitate. Our apartment is a beautiful place to live and work in. (an understatement I believe)





9) Alex, what words of wisdom would you impart to the beginning interior designer?

    I tell young people to think of hobbies they like and how that can apply in choosing a career. Do what you are passionate about! 

      Work with a designer you admire to gain experience, be an intern. You will get a sense of scale and have great exposure. Study the classics, go to antique shops, go go museums. See the best there is. Study the best and most  luxurious fabrics and furniture lines.

    Build great relationships with all of your vendors. It is so important; I have worked with the same vendors for over 20 years. Be a great Problem Solver; as they will arise and you will be remembered for resolving the issue.


 Alex thank you so much for participating in The 2013 Designer Series. You have  given us a great insight into your life, your work, and your inspired design aesthetic!

Alex has a line of incredible handmade ceramic lamps designed for Christoper Spitzmiller Inc. and a lush line of Langhorne Carpets; the next may be a fine fabric collection. 

I hope you will purchase his design book for your own book collection, You will have hours of enjoyment perusing page after page. "The Age of Elegance"  Simply click on the link! You may also contact Alex through his design site  Alex Papachristidis Interiors

Readers please leave a comment for Alex; I know it will mean a great deal to him!
Thank you for supporting the arts in every form and genre. The arts make the world a more beautiful place.

xoxo
Karena
Art by Karena

The winner of The Enchanted Home Giveaway is....Betsy at Coastal Colors!
Congratulations and thank you Tina for sponsoring this Giveaway for the  Summer Hostess!


40 comments:

Betsy@ coastal-colors said...

Karen, what a lovely post! Alex is a talented designer! I love his traditional approach with "a fresh touch"! Thank you for sharing this wonderful interview! I am thrilled to be the winner of The Enchanted Home's giveaway! Thank you for hosting this wonderful giveaway!

Betsy@ coastal-colors said...

I received you message about the giveaway, but i Cannot respond, it comes up "non- reply". Do you mind emailing me again with your email address? I'm at bb1white@hotmail.com
Sorry for the confusion!

Alicia Mackin said...

Oh my I would not have minded that childhood! And if the room on the cover is any indication of the rest of the book I am going to have to pick this up.

Ali of

Dressing Ken

Nancy {at} powellbrower at home said...

Wow Karena, did you score a HUGE one with this interview!!! It is a great one and I love hearing what is in his head. He is one of the best. Congratulations!
xo Nancy

Ricki Jill Treleaven said...

What a wonderful interview about an amazing life and talent, Karena! Thanks for taking the time to write this post. I'm ordering a copy of Alex's book. It looks lovely!

MJH DesignArts said...

Hi Alex (and Karena), I have loved your spaces from the first published images that caught my attention. Gorgeous international rooms with soul.
Thank you!
Mary

Castles Crowns and Cottages said...

Good morning Karena! You know, I am liking this new way of receiving new blog posts, so I don't miss any! And what fine designs this young man has put together. I am so honored to have my ballet tutu on your sidebar; I am in the midst of such wonderful designers and artists!

I hope you are having a wonderful day, Anita

Lisa Mende Design said...

great interview

Missy Rinfret Minicucci said...

Isn't he the sweetest? and so talented... I love everything he does. Great blog- just started following.

Teresa at Splendid Sass said...

karena-
Isn't he the greatest. I have posted several times on his work.
Thank you for sharing this interview.
Teresa
xoxo

The Paris Apartment said...

Wonderful interview! The book looks fantastic! Thanks Karen!

CJ Dellatore said...

Thank you for pointing out this post Karen. Very well done. I'll share it with my friends on Social Media!

Pam @ over50feeling40 said...

Loved the interview, Karena! And his book looks fabulous!

Teresa said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Teresa said...

A few years ago I learned that a doctor was aplying for some further graduation and in his application he had to include a personal letter... the letter was meant to explain his path as a doctor since the first moment he realised he wanted to be a doctor.

I found it apalling, though my friend had the exact moment nailed. I'm more like Mr. Papachristidis. In what I like - and hope to be good at - I don't feel I grew from a moment. It was always there.

And the education and upbriniging provided by his parents were Paramount in his great taste and wonderful view of Art, Design and Life.

You meet the more charming people, K!!!

Love,
T

Kimberly Lemmon said...

Fantastic interview. I have always been an enthusiastic admirer of his work and now I love him as a person!!

Pura Vida said...

Miss Karen you always have to most interesting and gracious guests for us!

French Basketeer.com said...

I'm definitely going to track down this book, and find some images online of his work; I love his sense of style! Thanks for another great interview, Karena!

martinealison said...

Bonjour ma chère amie,

Je viens de lire avec beaucoup d'intérêt cette superbe interview. Merci de nous faire connaître ce bel ouvrage également.
Ce fut un réel plaisir. Je suis très admirative et éblouie par le parcours professionnel d'Alex.

Gros bisous

Carla Aston said...

Such beautiful work and a special interview! Kudos to you Karen! I appreciate his eye for mixing styles. I so understand what he says about working with the same people for many years....it really helps to have people working on your projects who completely understand your expectations and desires and can execute flawlessly. Lovely interview!

Splendid Market said...

Wonderful rooms by a very interesting man. Great scale, balance and interesting pieces in each and every one. Happy Fourth Karena!

toko baju muslim murah said...

interesting to read thank you I really liked your article I love your beautiful blog and so enjoy your posts.good job

La Petite Gallery said...

I love that Eagle table, and always liked Mario. Beautiful post.
yvonne

Paisley Curtain said...

Once again Thanks! for introducing us to another talented artist/designer. I admit I was not familiar with Alex and his work, thanks to you I love it!

Best wishes
A happy 4th of July

Renae Moore said...

Hi Karena!
You always have great interviews and I love Alex's work!
Happy 4th!
xo

Ivy and Elephants said...

Hi Karina,
It was a great interview and the book looks gorgeous!
Happy 4th of July!
Hugs,
Patti

Linda Primmer said...

Such a lovely interview....Alex has great taste and i will certainly look into the book. Have a safe and happy 4th. xo Linda

Ideezine said...

Karena,

Great interview! Another great book to look forward to how fun! Alex is such a talent...how grand.

Happy July 4th!

Bette

Greet Lefèvre said...

Dearest Karen,
First of all I want to thank you for all your nice comments on my blog! I so appreciate it!
I am so sorry it is too long ago since I commented your posts! I really am so busy because we are working on a big project in the UK and go back and forth from Belgium to the UK. So I don't find the time to comment other blogs!!
This interview with Alex is wonderful and oh dear, his work is amazing! Absolutely my style!! I am so pleased you introduced us to this talented designer!!
I wish you a wonderful weekend!
Hugs and kisses,
Greet

Burlap Luxe said...

Hi Karena,
How exciting it was for you to have this beautiful conversation a girls dream to talk designs.
Love the beauty in the photos seeing pieces here and there that inspire my hunt to be watchful for.

As an interior designer myself and being featured Southern California's model home of the year in designs as well as a big news paper feature it was exciting to see myself published and some recognition. I love to create for the high very high end homes but, when it comes to my own I live simple and passionately aged with salvage and recycled French brocante.
I just love when I find a well loved piece with that once pricy tag and now at a price one cannot refuse when thrifting, or flea marketing to then add the right kind of rightness to it blending it to ones home.

Thank you for this beautiful share, and thank you my sweet friend do all your loyal and regular visits.
You my dear are a friend to love.

Bisous
Xx
Doré

Anne said...

What a fabulous interview! His style seems very opulent. Very different from my own rag-tag mishmash style!! LOL

Such a beautiful book, too.

Thanks for sharing it!

xox

Barbara Bussey {The Treasured Home} said...

Hi Karena,
Elegant, traditional European design. The interview must have been very fun! I love stories of how so many of us know our passion, early on in life. We just have to listen! The trick is blending our passion with a way to support ourselves.
Thanks for all your comments and my place! Always so appreciated. I hope you're having a happy, healthy summer!
Best to you,
Barbara

Fashion-isha said...

It's so interesting to learn about design professionals. Thanks for this interview. And thank you for you kind words on my blog. Glad to be your friend too! Hope you are feeling well.
xo
Sharon

Therese Long said...

Very interesting interview.
I like his point of view as well as his aesthetic.
Thank you Karena.
So happy to hear you are out and about sporting your Victor Costa!
Happy Summer my friend!

Mona Thompson said...

Great interview....and obviously an amazingly talented designer. Enjoyed his insight...and to be a great problem solver is wonderful advice. Hope all is well with you, Karena.

Laura Ingalls Gunn said...

What talent! Such gorgeous rooms. Thank you for sharing!

Creations by Marie Antoinette and Edie Marie said...

A most entertaining post filled with awe dropping pictures and information. Of course Mr. Fab himself Alex.
XXOO Marie Antoinette

Taylor Greenwalt said...

What a great interview Kerena...he is very talented!

Maria at inredningsvis said...

Such lovely inspiration:) your blog Is so great.

If you like Lexington...check out my blog:)

Have a great weekend dear:)

LOVE Maria from inredningsvis.se
(sweden)

Emma Simmons @PhD Jobs said...

This has been a wonderful and informational interview review. Thank you for posting this. It was very insightful.

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